Quotes like ‘what got you here, won’t get you there’ can be very haunting to me.
The thought of always tweaking and modifying can be overwhelming.
Yet, I find comfort when reminded it is the small positive changes turned into habits that matter most.
A mentor and friend, Ron B, refers to the idea that great tennis players can get in a funk, and come to find out, they just need to move the racquet a ‘1/4 turn’ in their grip for significant improvement.
The impact of small changes turned into habits is also backed by science.
Here is a great talk by James Clear about the power of habits – which he also explains in his bestselling book ‘Atomic Habits’.
A few highlights that struck me from his book. All based on scientific studies.
- Write it down: 3 different groups were trying to lose weight.
- #1 (the control group) was told to lose weight
- #2 was told to lose weight followed by a motivational talk
- #3 was told to lose weight, heard the motivational talk, but then wrote down how often they were going to work out.
- OUTCOME: Group #3 was 3X more successful!
- Reps matter: 2 different groups were making widgets in a set time period
- #1 group was told to make the most widgets (‘quantity’)
- #2 was told to make the best quality widget (‘quality’)
- OUTCOME: Group #1 actually ended up making not only more widgets but also the best quality product. How is that possible? Due to all of their trials, they were able to figure out how to make the best product. Meanwhile, the ‘quality’ group was too busy going for perfection.
- 1% a day is significant over time
- 1% improvement each day leads to an improvement of 37 times greater in year 1
- Year 2 you get into the thousands!
How does this apply to you?
In my recent blog post, ‘What, So What, Now What’, I shared the power of reflecting on 2018 can give clarity on where to put your 2019 energy.
Where do you want to grow? What are you going after this upcoming year?
Write it down for what you want in 2019. Not just the big goals, but since reps matter, then we need to write down the new rhythms and practices we will work on day in and day out.
Are any of these you?
- Be a writer? Then write ‘X’ about times per week.
- Lose weight? Write down how many times you are going to the gym and when.
- Improving culture at the office? Write down actions to take to improve culture – how many lunches per month with individuals? Celebration dinners with team?
- Improve friend relationships? Write down how many times you will hang out with your friends each month.
- Need to improve your marriage? Write down ways you are going to spend time with your spouse – date nights, trips, etc.
- Need to improve solitude? Write down how many mornings you want to get up and do quiet time. Write down other ways you will grow in solitude.
So, the best way to have a greater impact is:
- Reflect on the last year
- Identify the goals you are want to have for the upcoming year
- Write down the new rhythms you need to have each day/week to get there
As always, thank you for reading.
Email me if you want to connect to discuss this blog or anything else.
Random, but I had recent conversations about the identity ceremony we did for our daughter last summer. Read this if interested in learning about it.
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